Real Madrid CF has been dealing with blow after blow when it comes to their available lineup for the crucial part of the season. The latest setback involves Marcelo, who may miss the second leg of the UEFA Champions League semi-final clash against Chelsea after being called up to do his polling station duties in the upcoming Madrid elections
For those who are unfamiliar, Spanish citizens all face the possibility of being selected to "volunteer" at polling stations during elections. Brazilian-born Marcelo obtained Spanish citizenship in 2011, and as such has been eligible to be selected since then. On May 4, Madrid will be holding polls for local positions and Marcelo is one of those selected to help monitor one of the stations. Real Madrid will be facing Chelsea the next day, but the match is all the way in Stamford Bridge in London.
Very few exceptions are granted for this election duty, and Marcelo will not be seeking an exemption. Fans thought that he will likely miss the crucial match, but manager Zinedine Zidane has confirmed otherwise. In a press conference ahead of Saturday's La Liga match against Osasuna, Zidane said, "It is what it is. He'll carry out his obligations but he'll be with us on Wednesday."
According to Marca, Real Madrid will be organising a private jet to shuttle Marcelo to the UK from Madrid right on matchday. Kickoff won't be until 20:00, so there will be more than enough time for Marcelo to fly in and join his teammates.
Real Madrid will need all of their healthy players available on Wednesday, after settling for a 1-1 draw in the first leg at the Estadio Alfredo di Stefano last Tuesday. Chelsea not only has an away goal advantage, they also have a boosted morale. It was very evident during the first leg that the youthful Chelsea side had more energy and intensity, and the Real Madrid squad looked exhausted.
Zidane will have to make some tough choices on who to rest against Osasuna in La Liga tonight, with Real Madrid also still in contention for the title. Leaders Atletico Madrid are now just two points ahead with 73 points, while FC Barcelona are currently tied with Los Blancos with 71 points.